Conservatives will never turn back the leftist tide swamping our society unless they adopt the techniques the Left uses to push its agenda down our throats. Conservatives, being decent and reasonable, often assume that the Left will be reasonable too, if only everyone can sit down and talk things over. Dream on. If conservatives want to avoid living in a leftist dystopia they must stop pussy-footing around and get tough.
That’s not going to happen of course, not yet anyway. Conservatives are too insulated by the belief that democracy will ensure that everything comes right in the end to appreciate the full extent of the damage caused by leftist legislation at all levels of our over-governed nation, from the daily narrowing of our freedoms to the raid on our pockets by ‘clean energy’ fanatics. If power bills went up by 40 per cent in some countries there’d be riots. Here we just pay up.
To implement its agenda the Left plays dirty. It lies, it uses the muscle of newspaper and ABC campaigns and social media outrage to persecute and destroy people and institutions it disapproves of. Look at how anyone who still thinks what everyone thought twenty years ago about marriage is now portrayed as an antediluvian nutcase. That change of collective opinion didn’t come about by accident.
The Left achieves its objectives not though superiority in numbers, which it doesn’t have, but by using its resources effectively. The influence it exerts through its captive institutions is backed up by trained hordes of social media junkies to give the impression that what is only a leftist take on a particular issue is the voice of the people. Politicians listen, react, and another leftist goal is in the bag.
To make their views count, conservatives need to marshal their resources too. If ten per cent of people who agree with Alan Jones or Andrew Bolt could be persuaded to take to social media in a concerted campaign, they’d be a force to be reckoned with, especially if they adopted the leftist strategy of concentrating on one issue at a time. As the Dale Carnegie of leftism, Saul Alinsky, wrote, ‘Pick the target, freeze it, personalise it, polarise it.’
So if conservatives were to be more ruthless, which target should they pick first? A difficult decision, given the embarras du choix, but since communication is vital to any society, let’s start with the ABC, that giant megaphone of leftist propaganda. The most direct way to neutralise the ABC is to ignore it. No conservative politician or public figure should touch it with a barge-pole. This means not only refusing to be interviewed, but also not joining in morning-after whinges about Q&A’s latest exercise in audience-stacking or Leigh Sales’ feather-brained impertinence. Conservatives should remember that even by complaining about the ABC they are supporting it. The ABC depends on conservatives for its impact – their protests demonstrate that it’s being watched or listened to and thus shore up its claim to speak for the nation, even if half the nation disagrees with it. If conservatives treated the ABC as though it didn’t exist, public funding would become harder to justify.
Though this might panic the ABC’s hierarchs into striving for – if they can get their head around the concept – genuine balance, you’ll never get that unless you sack everybody at the ABC and start again. Conservatives should campaign for the end of the ABC in its present form. Putting all that cash into the hands of a coterie of lefties is asking for trouble. Besides, why do we need a state broadcaster at all? We’re not in Moscow in the 1930s, leftist strivings notwithstanding.
Education is another vital area. Conservatives should set up their own ‘safe schools’, free from the state-mandated leftist twaddle about climate change and male aggression that even private schools inculcate. Or they could home-school, to inoculate their children against the blanket leftism they’ll encounter at university.
Saul thinks it’s better to ‘go after people and not institutions’ because, as he charitably puts it, ‘people hurt faster than institutions’. Hurt is something leftists never shrink from inflicting. Conservatives will have to overcome their natural disinclination to ad hominem campaigns and target prominent leftist individuals, selected for their nuisance value. Exploit their weakest points. For example, the next time Waleed Aly delivers one of his disquisitions on the sweet reasonableness of Islam, conservatives could set up a Twitter storm, with wave after wave of questions on where he stands on gay ‘marriage’. That should dislodge him from his perch as the Left’s cool Muslim pin-up. Remember, it was conservative criticism of pert little Yassmin Abdel-Magied that sent her flouncing off to England.
If conservatives were better co-ordinated they would make full use of the instruments the Left has created as part of its policy of grievance fomentation. How about applying to enter a ‘Proud to be Straight’ float in the Sydney Mardi Gras and, when the organisers reject it, denouncing them to the Human Rights Commission for ‘heterophobia’?
Talking of that august body, even though Gillian, mercifully, is gone, a functionary remains there just crying out for a concerted conservative barrage – Dr Smarmily Smug in person, Tim Soutphommasane, who thinks it’s ‘racist’ not to be able to pronounce his name (let’s hear his efforts with polysyllabic Anglo surnames such as Featherstonehaugh or Cholmondeley). Conservatives should run a single-issue campaign demanding that Canberra explain what value taxpayers supposedly get for the millions of dollars a year they pay to keep him, and all the parasites in the ‘human rights’ industry, in a job. Keep at it, keep at it, as they did to Bill Leak and the Queensland students, until the remuneration becomes not worth the persecution. Co-ordinated ridicule works too. If mad feminists are wearing ‘pussy hats’, conservatives, female and male, should wear them too. The fad would stop overnight.
Physical violence alone should be off-limits to conservative campaigners. Leave that counterproductive tactic to pimply leftie ‘students’ and their screeching molls. Conservatives are, or should be, about steering humanity away from its primeval instincts.
Subscribe to The Spectator Australia today for a quality of argument not found in any other publication. Get more Spectator Australia for less – just $1 for 6 weeks